FEMA addresses Senate Committee regarding progress since September 11, 2001

Federal Emergency Management Agency Deputy Administrator for Protection and National Preparedness Timothy Manning addressed a Senate Committee on Tuesday about the progress FEMA has made since September 11, 2001.

The Committee hearing was titled "Are We Prepared? Measuring the Impact of Preparedness Grants Since 9/11." Manning said FEMA has greatly improved in preparedness as a result of the grant program and the organization is better able to protect the nation from emergencies than ever before.

"We are more secure and better prepared to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from the full range of threats and hazards the nation faces than we have been at any time in our history," Manning said. "We plan better, organize better, equip better, train better, and exercise better, resulting in improved national preparedness and resilience."

The increase in budget has allowed FEMA to increase its capabilities by upgrading equipment, providing training opportunities, creating response plans and increasing collaboration with local and state response organizations. The FEMA Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment was created through grant funding, which provides a five-step process to identify threats and hazards, determine their consequences and strategize which response team should respond to the emergency.

Manning used the examples of Hurricane Sandy and the Boston bombings to prove that FEMA has increased its response capabilities since the terrorist attack in New York City on September 11, 2001. Manning said the grant program has greatly improved the nation's ability to respond to emergencies and the National Preparedness Goal has had a great impact.

"We have demonstrated the efficacy of our grant programs through thoughtful analysis," Manning said. "The National Preparedness Goal provides us with a clearly defined target to work toward and we have greatly improved our ability to assess needs and track spending toward meeting those needs."